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Contributor guidance

Policing Insight is the leading platform to keep up to date with the latest in progressive policing. It is where the global police and criminal justice community come to consume and share knowledge, opinion and analysis.

Policing Insight’s audience reflects the collaboration required between police and criminal justice organisations, the third sector, industry and academia to meet the significant challenges facing policing and criminal justice. More than a third of our audience is from outside the UK.

Our aim is to provide an independent, non-partisan platform designed to engender debate, share good practice and build an invaluable resource covering the full width of policing and criminal justice topics including policy, practice, crime and technology.

We tread a clear line between editorial and advertorial, so while we are happy to reference an author’s commercial background or mention key commercial participants within articles, we avoid highlighting or endorsing any specific commercial products or services (although we do run paid-for advertorial content, which is clearly labelled as such).

We welcome article pitches from contributors around the world, whether practitioners, academics or subject experts.

And we are always looking to add to our pool of freelance journalists and analysts able to provide article pitches and take on commissions.

Please email [email protected] in the first instance if you are interested.

This page provides a simple guide to types of contributions we are interested in sourcing, how to supply contributions and how they are published.

Types of contribution

Free contributor

Policing Insight aims to provide a platform for all stakeholders in policing and criminal justice, whether to promote innovations in policy, practice and technology, highlight important research, or provide analysis and opinion on the key issues.

We welcome free article submissions and in return we will provide a global policing and criminal justice audience for you, your organisation and your content.

Your article will be credited/bylined to you and your organisation and will be published on Policing Insight as ‘free registered’ access for seven days. It will be promoted across our social media networks and featured on our Media Monitor service. After seven days the article will revert to our subscriber archive, which is still accessible to police forces, academic institutions and other organisations with subscriptions.

We prefer exclusive or first publication of content but we will consider republishing non-exclusive content if it is of value and potentially new to our readers.

Please forward your articles and article pitches to our Editor Keith Potter: [email protected]

Paid contributor

We welcome paid article pitches on global policing, crime and criminal justice topics from journalists and expert analysts around the world. We are interested in in-depth analytical articles, research, interviews with key stakeholders etc.

If we commission your pitch, the article will be bylined to your name as a Policing Insight writer, and will be published as subscriber access only. The article will be promoted across our social media networks and featured on our Media Monitor service.

If we pay to commission your article then we will retain copyright on the content published.

Please forward your articles and article pitches to our Editor Keith Potter: [email protected]

Commercial contributor

We welcome credible editorial pitches from commercial organisations eg expert opinion, analysis, research etc, but would not include promotional content for products and services.

We do, however, offer the opportunity to publish advertorial on Policing Insight. Your advertorial can take the form of opinion, analysis, case studies or just plain advert copy to promote products, services, job vacancies or courses. All advertorial is labelled as such to differentiate from our independent editorial and is published open access forever on the site. The advertorial will be promoted across our social media networks and featured on our Media Monitor service.

Please contact our advertising team for advertorial prices at [email protected]

Topics

Policing Insight covers every aspect of policing and criminal justice but with the emphasis on policing. Topics include politics, policy, governance, practice, innovation, operational policing, finance, people and organisational development, crime, and law and legislation.

Our focus is very much on progressive policing and innovation – we want to facilitate the debate on the issues, sharing knowledge and insight.

We also reflect in our content (as with our readership and contributors) that modern policing is about partnership, including between forces and agencies, academia, industry, the third sector, and the health sector, as well as transnational partnerships and collaborations.

We are interested in articles focused on specific territories from around the world or having a perspective from those territories, but we are also equally interested in transnational and region agnostic content looking at topics and issues that are universal to all territories.

Types of content

Policing Insight’s editorial content offers long-read articles focusing on analysis, opinion and research. Our target word count is 1,000-1,500 words, although we’re happy to let articles run longer if they are exploring issues in greater depth, or looking at particularly complex subjects. Around 2,500-3,000 is the cut off for individual pieces (longer analytical content can be split into a series of articles).

We are not a news site so we don’t publish news or press releases on our main editorial pages. However, we do publish links to criminal justice news and announcements, as well as relevant commercial launches and developments, on our Media Monitor service; if you have a press release which is relevant to our audience, please forward it to [email protected], and include ‘Media Monitor’ in the subject line.  

We publish features, opinion, analysis and interviews – our only aim is that the content is valuable and interesting to our readership.

Our audience

Policing Insight has a broad audience drawn from the wide spectrum of policing and criminal justice including government, policing, academia, third sector and industry from around the world.

Currently 65% of our users are from the UK, and 35% from the rest of world – primarily the USA, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and Europe – and our international audience is growing steadily.

You are writing for an expert but broad audience so articles can be technical but should be accessible.

How to submit an article

Please submit articles and article ideas to our Editor Keith Potter at [email protected]

We recommend sending idea pitches in the first instance unless the article is already written, so that the Editor can help shape the article to suit our audience.

If you are a journalist or analyst looking for paid commissions, then as well as considering your ideas, we may also have article commission opportunities to offer you, if the topics suit your interest and expertise.

Article format and materials guidelines

When submitting an article that is ready for publication, please supply the following:

  • Article text
    Please supply the text in a Word document, to include:
    – Headline text
    – Body text
    – Call out boxes – we can insert supplemental information (text and images) in a box within the text or at the end of the article
    – References and links where appropriate, included as embedded hyperlinks wherever possible.
  • Author information
    First-time contributors should include a brief biography (up to 100 words), to include:
    – Your name, job title and organisation for the article byline
    – Relevant qualifications and experience 
    – Your contact email address; this is used to set up an author account and author page – please indicate if you want the email address public or private on the author page
    – A head and shoulders photo.
    We create an author’s page for all bylined contributors, enabling you to respond to any comments on your articles.
  • Images
    Please supply images in jpeg or png format as separate file attachments with meaningful filenames ie not inserted into Word documents. Please also supply captions for the images and any photo credits.
    – Author image for byline – head and shoulders in portrait format.
    – Feature image, which can be of the author also, a thematic image or advert image if for an advertorial; this needs to be a landscape image at least 800 pixels wide by 533 pixels deep
    – Any additional images to be inserted in the body text; please indicate where they should be positioned in the text and provide captions.
    – Chart images – any chart images that have to be resized can result in blurry text labels, so where possible please supply charts at the correct size for our articles (768 pixels wide). It can be beneficial for complex charts to provide an additional high resolution version which we can host so that the user can click the smaller image to access the the larger image.
  • Data tables
    Where possible please provide any data tables to be included in the article as Excel files. Please avoid supplying tables as images as they can appear blurry.

Writing style guide

  • No double spacing required within the text.
  • References and backup sources are great where relevant, but where possible always preferred as embedded hyperlinks rather than as URLs, footnotes or endnotes.
  • Avoid unnecessary jargon wherever possible
  • Abbreviations – when using initialisms and acronyms, unless you’re confident that an international audience will recognise them (eg BBC, Nato), please spell them out in full on first use, and abbreviate thereafter.
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